The Minus Scale - For Lack of Lights EP
December 31, 2005
Bursting with warm, gooey pop goodness, Exeter, New Hampshire’s The Minus Scale have released a stunningly excellent online-only EP. The four tracks, available on their Myspace and Purevolume, collectively make up the For Lack of Lights EP. Upon researching the band, I was dumbfounded to find only 14,000 plays after I heard the quality of music involved. I admit, I’m a bit of a sucker for this kind of fun music, but The Minus Scale has some real talent. Lead singer Ryan Levasseur has an aura about him over the electronica-tinged backing instruments in the first song, “What Is It?” There’s a distinct keyboard flair involved, but the guitars and bass are not to be outdone. A smooth transition drops the keyboards out noticeably and turns the song into a hard rocker before reintroducing the keyboards. This back and forth song structure works well for The Minus Scale and reappears a number of times on the EP.
“Say What You Mean” is another upbeat, charging pop-rock delight. I guarantee a listen or two to this song is all it will take to get you hooked on The Minus Scale. When you think they might stray into the realm of formulaic obscurity, all it takes is a well-placed bit of piano playing built into the wildly entertaining riffs to send you back to cloud nine. Despite a bit of lyrical repetition, this song does indeed have a solid message about honesty. “Automatic Girls” has The Minus Scale sounding a bit like Houston Calls with a more mature-sounding vocalist. This is the shortest song on the EP, and the one most devoid of thrilling hooks. It has an indie-pop influence, but could probably use a little more complexity in the riffs, which begin to sound like the ones from prior songs and possibly an additional verse.
The fourth and final track on the For Lack of Lights EP is “All About You,” which is a little darker vocally with rougher chords and more of an ambient noise quality to the instrumentation. Instead of simply consisting of chugging riffs, there’s some variation thrown in with stops and starts and crescendos in the transitions. While it lacks that sing-along quality of the first two songs, “All About You” comes off as the most musically complete track. The Minus Scale has completed a thrilling 4-song EP that captures the indie and pop-rock aura perfectly. They showcase their ability to write intelligent and emotionally gripping music on For Lack of Lights. I’m going to recommend this EP because it’s charmingly fun while staying true to the quality songwriting.
The EP is available online to download or stream on Myspace and to stream on Purevolume. There are no plans to print the EP at this time.